This elegant luxury 5 stars rated hotel has been recently refurbished and is ideally located in 2 acres of beautifully manicured landscaped gardens in the Ballsbridge district surrounded by ivy-covered homes and embassies, it is close to some of Dublin’s historic major attractions such as the 12th century St. More Patricks Cathedral the vibrant main shopping area, O'Connell Street: and Temple Bar. The financial district and Lansdowne Road train station are also only a short distance away. The hotel offers guests 197 well equipped elegant rooms and offers something to suit most budgets with Deluxe, Executive and Suites available.
The spacious rooms feature Italian marble bathrooms, fitted out with deep bathtubs, power showers, complimentary bathrobe and slippers, in room safe, Nespresso machine, feature floor to ceiling windows some with glorious garden views, some with private terraces, BOSE sound touch wireless music system, minibars, Satellite TV, DVD players, high speed internet access, multiline speakerphones ,European twin beds or king size beds, down duvets and pillows and on request hypoallergenic pillows, suites have sofas and dining tables and for families the option of interconnecting rooms.
The hotel restaurant serves the finest modern Irish cuisine created by experienced kitchen staff from the freshest locally sourced produce with popular choices with guests including braised lamb shoulder, roasted free-range chicken, summer risotto, onion tart with molten goat’s cheese and seafood specialities including freshly smoked salmon, special market catch and Dublin Bay Seafood chowder. The restaurant also offers the choice of two private dining rooms and a well prepared children’s menu. The hotel ICE bar overlooking the outdoor courtyard is very popular with guests who can appreciate the wonderful surroundings to relax in and enjoy a fine collection of premium brand beers, cocktails, champagne and the finest Irish whiskey.
The hotel also offers guests the use of a 46foot (14metre) heated indoor lap pool and Jacuzzi whirpool located next to the Spa and Wellness Centre which overlooks the manicured sunken gardens through large windows adding huge amounts of natural light. There is also a high spec fitness centre offering the latest range of cardiovascular equipment with headsets and audio visual monitors, free weights, weight training machines and the services of personal trainers when required. The hotel offers one of Dublin’s most esteemed venues for conferences and galas with three high spec meeting rooms and two exquisite ballrooms with natural light flooding the rooms. The hotel also excels at giving delegates memorable meetings with its inspirational InterContinental Insider Collection of authentic experiences including motivational speakers and interactive team building activities which encourage effective working relationships.
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OK, so you've decided when you're off to Dublin here is a list of the top 5 things to do in Dublin the Castle, Botanic Gardens, Cathedral, Guinness Storehouse and the Old Jameson Distillery
One of the most popular attractions is Dublin Castle located on the highest ground at the meeting point of the River Liffey and its small tributary the Poddle. The castle was originally constructed on a former Vikings settlement during 1204 on the orders of King John of England. The castle is of a characteristic Norman courtyard design with a central square protected by strong defensive walls and circular towers at each corner. The “Record Tower” located in the south-east quadrant is the only remaining medieval tower in left in Dublin, it was used as a high security prison in Tudor times to imprison priests and native Irish detainees. The castle underwent a number of renovations in the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries and during its long history has been used as a treasury, courts of law, prison, military fortress and the seat of English Administration in Ireland. Today this impressive castle is used to host a number of conferences and dining functions, the prestigious State Apartments, Undercroft, Chapel Royal, are open to guided tours, and the Heritage Centre, Craft shop and restaurant are open to visitors.
Dublin Botanic Gardens
Founded in 1795 after receiving funds from the Irish Parliament these public botanic gardens are a very popular tourist attraction. The original purpose was to encourage a scientific approach towards the study of agriculture with the gardens growing plants that were useful for medicine and human and animal food production. It is now famous for its sensitively restored and planted glasshouses containing over 15,000 plant varieties from a diverse range of habitats. These award winning glasshouses have achieved notable recognition for its tireless work for plant conservation housing in excess of 300 endangered plant species from all around the world as well as 6 species unfortunately already lost to the wild.
Recent investment has resulted in a purpose built library/herbarium containing a collection of approaching 750,000 pressed plants, new glasshouses, additional lecture rooms, new compost storage bays and an improved visitor and educational centre, the 18th century Directors and Curators Houses have also been recently refurbished. Visitors can stroll around the beautiful Herbaceous borders, alpine garden, rose garden, rock garden, pond area and the arboretum. The gardens also contain important and historical collections of rare and beautiful orchids.
Christ Church Cathedral
One of the top visitor attractions in Dublin, Christ Church Cathedral is the religious centre of the city and one of the city’s grandest historical buildings. Located in the oldest part of Dublin it can trace its history back almost one thousand years from the Vikings and the turbulent Anglo-Norman times to the present day. It has a rich and diverse history with beautiful interiors and an enthralling medieval crypt, one of the oldest remaining structures in the city, the crypt is one of the finest and largest examples of its kind in Ireland and Britain. Once a major pilgrimage site during the medieval period with an important collection of religious relics, today it’s still possible to view the heart of the patron saint of Dublin, Laurence O’Toole.
During Victorian times major renovations were carried out to prevent the badly decaying structure from collapsing and these works make it difficult to distinguish some of the genuine medieval interiors from the repaired sections. The exterior was extensively refaced with new stone during this restoration period but the Cathedral still retains the original Norman and early English features, to the south of the transept you will find the remains of the 13th century constructed chapter house.
For all lovers of Guinness you must visit one of Dublin’s premier attractions the “Guinness Storehouse” located in a historical building it is the beating heart of this world famous and unforgettable brand. There are an amazing seven floors to explore narrating the amazing story from its humble beginnings when Arthur Guinness the founder signed a 9,000 year lease on the brewery for an annual rent of £45. Your journey begins when entering the Huge glass Atrium which represent the worlds larges pint glass which rises to the top of this wonderful seven storey building. The tour includes the craft of brewing this amazing drink from a combination of just four simple ingredients, hops, yeast, barley and water. Master brewer Fergal Murray explains the step by step brewing process culminating with a sample tasting .From the top of the building you get some fantastic panoramic views over Dublin from the “Gravity Bar” look out. At the end of the tour you arrive back on the ground floor, here you see the Guinness Store where you can purchase all sorts of Guinness memorabilia, much of it exclusive to the Guinness Storehouse. A fantastic and very rewarding experience for all lovers of Guinness.
Old Jameson Distillery
Dublin is home to not one but two of the world’s most famous drinks, Guinness and of course Jameson Irish Whiskey this three times distilled brew gives the taster exceptional smoothness . If you enjoyed the Guinness tour you will love the experience of the Old Jameson Whisky Distillery tour.
Located on the site of the original distillery in Dublin the whisky tour tells the fantastic story of John Jameson and his exceptional smooth Irish whiskey. The tour takes you back in time as the expert guides explain how John Jameson first made one of the world’s finest Irish whiskey. All visitors receive a little tipple of this famous brew and a lucky few are selected to take part in whisky tasting with the much sought after “Irish Whiskey Taster Certificate”.
There are no less than 3 Bars within the distillery, Jameson Dublin Bar, the Reserve Bar and JJ’s Bar the social nucleus with its stone walls, wooden beams and decorative glass chandeliers. There is a top class restaurant “The 3rd Still Jameson Restaurant” located on the mezzanine floor with fantastic views over the Old Jameson Distillery. So there’s plenty to do and see and plenty of places to relax and enjoy a drink or meal with friends and family, a great Dublin institution.
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Dublin has a long and troubled history which can be traced back to its original Celtic settlement in 700 BC on the Liffey’s northern bank. The modern day settlement began during the 9th and 10th centuries as two individual settlements, the Viking settlement known as “Dubh Linn” and Gaelic one known as “Atha Cliath”. Old Viking remains of the settlement have been discovered at wood Quay in Dublin City Centre on the current site of the City Council’s offices. The Vikings ruled Dublin for close on three centuries; the city name is derived from these two names with “Dublin” being internationally recognised with its Irish translation being “Baile Atha Cliath”. The city underwent rapid expansion from the 17th century, for a short period of time it became the fifth largest city in Europe and the second largest in the British Empire. There is much to see and do in this cosmopolitan city which has been recognised as one of the top 30 cities in the world. Today it is a historical and cultural centre for the country as well as being the principal administration, economic, arts and centre for education.
With so much to see and do when is the best time to visit Dublin? Irelands weather is never one of extremes due to its location but whenever you choose to go you can’t discount the likelihood of a bit of rain. Having said that, through the summer season you can get periods of warm sunshine and during this period the majority of public events take place. During June to August the tourist destinations are often crowded with higher prices for accommodation due to the steep demand; during this period you are more likely to meet other tourists than the “native” Dubliners who usually take their holidays at the same time. Seasoned travelers come in May or September and miss the higher prices and are able to see many of the tourist destinations without the huge crowds associated with summer. Winter time is a fun time to visit, the weather is cold and wet but the warmth of the locals more than makes up for this with festive groups, Christmas lights, live music and lively pubs and a fantastic atmosphere guaranteed. Spring time is the least popular time, the weather is still cool and some of the tourist destinations are closed but for those that are open there are almost no crowds. So you pay your money and you make your choice depends on what you want to see and do during your trip, a little forward planning will ensure you get the most out of your holiday and if you can’t fit it all in do what many do and return!
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